After a two-year Covid-19 break, Pretoria Pride made a promising return to a new location for the city’s 7th edition.
Despite the cloudy and rainy weather, around a thousand people turned up at the Presley’s venue in Lynnwood on Saturday 4 December for a day (and night) of celebrating queer identity.
Narrowly missing one of two afternoon thunderstorms, the parade kicked off at around midday. Marchers proceeded to Lynwood Road alongside a handful of rainbow-bedecked floats and vehicles.
A traditionally celebration-focused parade, there was little sign of direct issued-based messaging among the crowd – but there was no lack of visible and joyful LGBTQ Pride.
After returning to the venue, the revellers settled in to enjoy the festivities with a host of performers and DJs.
“We’re queer, we’re here, get used to it,” Bruce Walker, founder of Pretoria Pride said to the cheering crowd from the stage. “We’re born this way, so don’t let them change you. Be who you are and not what they want you to be. It’s quite simple. It’s your life, not theirs.”
Walker later told MambaOnline: “Everybody had a good time. Luckily we could move in and out [of the venue] with the rain, and that didn’t dampen the spirits.”
Addressing the devastating impact of Covid-19 lockdowns over the past two years on the event, Walker said: “It’s like starting Pride from scratch again. We’ve got to start getting the community together and revolutionising how we do Pride. We will develop, and this is the start of things to come.”
Mamba was there to capture the faces of Pretoria Pride 2021.